How Old Must You Be to Start Investing?


If investing is something that holds your interest, you may have already done some reading and research about the topic. One of the key ingredients to building wealth is time. The sooner you start investing, the faster you can build wealth. If you start investing at a young age, you can accumulate more money than if you wait until you are older to start. All of that being said, how old must you be to start investing?

1. Custodial Account

By setting up a custodial account under the supervision of a parent or guardian, you don’t necessarily have to wait until you are 18 to get started investing. Talk to a trusted adult about investing and feel them out about whether or not they would be willing to oversee such an account for you. Once you have done that, you can set up a custodial account with their help. Keep in mind, that whoever is helping you will have the power to use the money in whatever way they see fit, which is why trust is so important.

Since you are younger, you will probably want to search for a way to invest that charges little-to-no fees and a small account balance requirement. Fortunately, there are companies that offer investing accounts like this. Setting up a custodial account has a number of other advantages. For instance, your tax rate will be used for the payment of any dividends and also for withdrawals, which should be lower than that of your parents. A disadvantage, however, is that this type of investing could be a drawback once it comes time to apply for financial aid when you are entering college.

2. 529 Plan

Those interested in saving for college could set up a 529 plan if they are underage. This kind of investment plan has tax benefits that could help your parents too. You can open two different types of 529 plans. Whether you choose the prepaid tuition plan or the college savings investment plan, you will have certain rules that must be followed in order to invest. Some of these rules differ depending on what part of the country you live in. It’s important to do your homework and consider all of your options carefully before choosing this as a way to start investing.

3. Guardian Account

Another way to invest is through a guardian account. You will still need to have an adult help you set it up and manage it, but money can be withdrawn from it at any time for any reason. Whoever is helping you manage the account will be responsible for taxes and earnings. Additionally, they will have control over the account. Trust is, once again, of utmost importance. One of the good things about this type of account is that you can use it for anything, including a car, your first house, or a future business you wish to start or buy.

Even though you must be 18 in some states and 21 in others in order to invest in stocks, there are ways to invest when you are younger, as you can see from the information above. So, how old must you be to start investing? The answer is that it depends on what you want to invest in as well as what kind of help you can get doing it.

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